In London’s Covent Garden neighborhood, within feet of several theaters, restaurants and museums, One Aldwych feels much more like a private residence than a busy city hotel. Attribute this to the ridiculously spacious suites, and a complimentary minibar, restocked daily, with bottles of red for the grownups and treats for kiddos. Not to mention the impressive 400-piece collection of contemporary art comprising paintings, sculptures and prints by UK-based artists.
Though there’s so much action right at its doorstep, this independent boutique property is a tranquil retreat in the best possible way. During our family’s recent stay, One Aldwych served as the ideal base, literally in the heart of London’s heart. After breakfast each morning, we ambled over to attractions such as the British Museum, Trafalgar Square, the National Gallery, the London Transport Museum and more. By afternoon, we would make our way back for a bit of a respite before heading to dinner at top restaurants such as Dishoom and Fatt Pundit, followed by an evening boat ride or theatre show in the West End.
Our family immensely enjoyed our weeklong trip to London in large part to the proximity to all the top sights as well as the comforts at One Aldwych, the perfect home to return to after full days around town.
In the former Morning Post newspaper building, the property’s historic bones have since given way to 101 sprawling guestrooms. In a city where space is the ultimate luxury, our beautiful corner suite measured 646 square feet and connected to a second bedroom, making it an ideal configuration for families. With large windows and an eye-pleasing pastel palette, the luxury digs felt like our own mini apartment. Marble baths, with walk-in rain showers, soaking tubs and heated floors (!), were equally spacious.
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The property features a lobby-level bar that adds just the right amount of buzz and activity with its signature restaurant, Indigo. Breakfast and dinner are served here, on the mezzanine level overlooking the lobby. From buttermilk waffles to avocado toast to potato rosti, breakfast is made to order. Wash it all down with hot chocolate and cappuccino, made from Union hand-roasted coffee. Chef Dominic Teague’s dinner menu is entirely dairy-free and gluten-free with many ingredients sourced from his native Cornwall. A vegan tasting menu is also available.
It’s One Aldwych’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory-themed afternoon tea, however, that’s the golden ticket for families. Indulge in fizzy lifiting drinks, scones with snozzberry jam, chocolate tarts and fluffy candy floss.
The hotel boasts a fitness center, an indoor chlorine-free pool and a spa as well, but of all the bells and whistles, family travelers will most appreciate the complimentary minibar. Ask any parent: A few snacks can go a long way during a full day of sightseeing. Our kids were thrilled to see their favorite potato crisps and chocolate bars replenished daily.
It would be remiss to not mention One Aldwych’s substantial sustainability efforts. Not only are there no single-use plastics, including water bottles, straws and stirrers, but food waste is composted and glass is crushed onsite. Utility and drainage systems have been updated to be as energy-efficient as possible. There are even beehives on the roof.
The knowledgeable staff and hotel concierge can arrange everything from show tickets to Matilda and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child to reservations for the London Eye.
Location is everything in London, and One Aldwych is a short walk to many of the most famous historic sights as well as several Tube stations.
From the hotel, we managed to stroll to Hyde Park and Buckingham Palace as well as the lively pedestrian-only streets of Covent Garden. The nearby London Transport Museum, dedicated to the history of the Underground system, is also a family favorite. The Thames and Big Ben are within walking distance, too.
In a city with so many historical, cultural and culinary highlights, One Aldwych is a highlight in its own right.
Editor’s Note: Tanvi received a media package to review One Aldwych for families. As always, our opinions are our own on Ciao Bambino. Photos courtesy of One Aldwych except where noted.
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